Sonya Ballentine and Lindsay Sheehan – Session II

Lessons learned from community-based participatory research in marginalized communities


Sonya Ballentine and Lindsay Sheehan, Illinois Institute of Technology

Chicago’s violence-plagued communities require systematic and culturally sensitive solutions that build on community strengths and involve members from those same communities. Community-based participatory research (CBPR) is one strategy that involves academic researchers working collaboratively with a group of stakeholders in order to translate research results into practice and lead to social change within these communities. The presentation outlines the basic principles of CBPR, addresses the adaptability of this research approach to the needs of specific target groups and environments, and introduces attendees to the Inspiring Change CBPR curriculum that was designed to engage African Americans with mental illness in research. We will give examples of how community-centered research can be implemented in local, marginalized communities and discuss practical ways in which these same communities can be involved in each stage of the research process. Finally, we will involve attendees in an interactive session to simulate the formation of a CBPR team and a simplified approach to narrowing down a research topic.